Florida limits live contact during HS football practices

June 7, 2016 / FootballSports Medicine
Florida’s athletic association announced Monday new limits on how much contact high school football teams can have during their practices.

FHSAAAccording to a statement from the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA), live contact will be limited to 30 minutes per day and 80 minutes per week during the regular season. Contact cannot occur on more than two consecutive days and may not exceed three practices per week.

The new rules take effect Aug. 1.

From the FHSAA:

“Player safety has and will always be the number one goal of the FHSAA,” FHSAA Executive Director Dr. Roger Dearing said. “Protecting our student-athletes is paramount in growing the game of football and this administrative procedure is a step in the right direction.”

From day six through Monday of the first regular season game (or end of spring practice), live contact will be limited to 40 minutes each day, with no more than two straight days of live contact. During two-a-days, only one practice shall include live contact and it shall not surpass 40 minutes.

“The game of football will always come with some inherent risk, but we will never stop working to try and make one of the greatest team sports on earth safer,” FHSAA Football Administrator Frank Beasley said. “We will continue our efforts to educate and teach coaches on the Drive to December about how to run effective practices while using the limited-contact procedures.”

The FHSAA developed the procedures in collaboration with Practice Like Pros, an organization that works to improve player safety and encourages no-contact practices.

“We thank leadership of the FHSAA for working with us on these practice-field restrictions,” said Practice Like Pros founder Terry O’Neil said. “As a trendsetter and a top-three football state, Florida sends this message nationally: In order to preserve the game we love on Friday nights and Saturday afternoons, let’s mitigate risk Monday through Thursday. Ultimately, high school teams can and will practice like pros.”

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